Ask a Guy: Friends With Benefits Rules post image

Ask a Guy: Friends With Benefits Rules

I’d like to know your rules for having a friends with benefits arrangement.  I’m not looking to be in a relationship right now, but I’m only human and I have needs.  I want something that’s dependable enough that I can take care of my needs without having to jump from guy to guy or pick some guy up at a bar or club.  Yes, I understand that this isn’t what women say they typically want, but I just got out of a long, difficult relationship and I don’t want to dive right back into commitment again.  

Can you tell me the best friends with benefits rules so I can make this happen without drama or complication?

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Yes, I’d be happy to share the best friends with benefits rules so you can hook up without things being complicated.  It’s certainly possible, but it requires that you look at things honestly and set clear boundaries for yourself.  It also requires that you know yourself – some women can have a friends with benefits arrangement with a guy and have absolutely no problem with it… other women absolutely can’t.  It’s a mixture of biology, personality, and psychology that will determine if you’re someone who can do it or not…

One note before we get rolling. I am not encouraging or advocating having a friends with benefits arrangement in your life or as a lifestyle. At the same time, I’m not discouraging it. I’m simply answering your question and speaking to what friends with benefits rules will lead to the most successful results – those results being to get what you want without hurting anyone (including yourself) in the process. I want you to get what you want for the greatest good of everyone involved.  Fair?

OK… let’s begin with…

Friends With Benefits Rules

(aka: how to have a friends with benefits arrangement without drama, difficulty, or disaster)

    • Rule #1: A clean break must be possible (and know that it will end eventually).

      Friends with Benefits Rules by Eric Charles

This means no neighbors, no co-workers, no ex-boyfriends, no guys that are currently your friend and no people within your social circle. Really, the term “friends with benefits” is misleading because having a FWB arrangement is not sleeping with a guy who’s your friend.  It’s an arrangement that you define from the get-go as a purely sexual arrangement… and when it ends, it needs to be clean without loose ends (for you or for him).

Now, I understand that some of you might be reading this article specifically because you are sleeping with a friend and you want it to become something more. You’ll still benefit from reading this article, but read this article as well:

MORE: How to Turn a Friend With Benefits Into Something More

    • Rule #2: Make sure you’re already happy and OK in your life.

In our modern society, it is common for people to want to add something to their life to fill some sort of emotional void. This is a recipe for disaster in a friends with benefits type of relationship since it’s easy to slide from wanting to fill a void into making a friends with benefits arrangement into something more.  FWB arrangements are super clean and simple: a relationship purely for sexual enjoyment and exploration. Nothing more (we’ll talk about this soon).

If you’re not currently happy, fulfilled. and whole, then your focus needs to be on living your life where you’re 100% in touch with your grounded, stable, ever-present sense of being OK before you bring any sort of relationship into the picture (whether it’s a friends with benefits arrangement or any other type of relationship dynamic).  FWB arrangements are best thought of as a bonus to be enjoyed in your life, but not something you need to hold on to or possess… when you have it, you enjoy it… when it ends, you allow it to end gracefully.  You’re not looking for (and you won’t have) a “happy ending”… but you can have a satisfying and graceful ending.

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    • Rule #3: Both he and you are allowed to do whatever you want outside of the time you’re together.

Expect that he will do whatever he wants to do.  Expect that he will see other people.  And because this is the expectation, you must practice safe sex and educate yourself on what it means to have safe sex.  It is essential that you understand the risks involved with sex and protect yourself accordingly.  Also, because the expectation is that he will probably be seeing other people, you need to be able to be 100% OK with this or don’t attempt to have a FWB arrangement in the first place.  This brings us to the next rule…

    • Rule #4: Keep it simple and keep your options wide open.

Being that you can expect he’ll be seeing other people (or at least, that he’s open to it at any given point), it’s important that you keep your options wide open too. I’m not saying that you’re sleeping with multiple people, but it’s important that you keep your options open and keep yourself in the dating market.  This protects you from slipping into thinking of the FWB arrangement as something more than it actually is, which is pure, simple, uncomplicated sexual exploration and enjoyment with a guy on an ongoing (but time-limited) basis.

    • Rule #5: Don’t treat him (or even think of him) like a friend or boyfriend.

The most important rule of having a friends with benefits arrangement is that you limit what this relationship is in your life.  This rule is what makes the difference between a fun, light, satisfying FWB situation… and a messy, disastrous, regretful relationship situation. If you feel you need to connect with someone as a friend… call up one of your friends. If you feel like you want a boyfriend, then start a relationship with a guy from the foundation of creating that kind of relationship. As a rule, though, never put your FWB into a role that is outside the arrangement (which is pure sexual enjoyment and exploration).  This doesn’t mean that you’re cold, distant or treat them like an object.  It simply means that you limit how  you relate to them… keep it fun, light and flirtatious.  This brings us to the next rule…

    • Rule #6: There’s no drama or problems in a FWB arrangement.

If you follow rule #5, you will most likely avoid this entirely.  FWB relationships are fun, easy, and flirtatious. You’re not bringing your problems into it and neither is he.  There’s no drama or heaviness in the arrangement.  Similarly, you are not arguing with each other or putting expectations on one another.  If you notice strong negative feelings coming up in yourself, it’s time to end it.  If you notice strong negative reactions coming up in him… or that there’s problem between the two of you… it’s time to end it.  With all this in mind, this is why the next rule is super important…

    • Rule #7: Choose a guy that is emotionally stable.

Even if you are great at following the first six rules, everything will come apart if you choose a guy who isn’t emotionally stable. This means he’s a guy that isn’t emotionally volatile (as in, he doesn’t explode into anger, he doesn’t pressure you with demands, he doesn’t get jealous, he’s not a trouble-magnet in his own life, he’s not vindicative) and he’s got his life in order (he’s not depressed, his own life isn’t filled with drama or problems and he makes level-headed decisions).  This relates to all the previous rules… people with problems always find a way to suck other people into them… and they succeed if the other person isn’t in a stable place herself.

    • Rule #8: Be (and maintain being) as sexy as possible.

Just because you’re not a couple doesn’t mean that you can slack off on being your sexiest self.  This means you’re going to maintain great fitness habits and great grooming habits.  The relationship might be casual, but being your sexiest self is important to maintain the mutual excitement of a FWB arrangement.  It also keeps you on the radar as an attractive option on the dating market.

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    • Rule #9: Make sure you both “get off”…

Being that the FWB relationship is purely based on having a satisfying sexual experience, it’s important for you to make your pleasure a priority.  The idea is that you are both satisfied… he “gets off” and so do you.

    • Rule #10: It is for sexual pleasure and exploration only.

The great thing about having a FWB arrangement is that it’s outside your social circle and any heavy drama or expectations… this means you can really let loose and explore your sexual desires and fantasies without worrying that it could screw up a relationship.  So go all in… allow yourself to do what feels good, feels exciting and feels sexy to you…

As I said at the beginning of the article, I’m not encouraging or discouraging anyone from having a friends with benefits type of arrangement. That’s your decision.

I will say that there’s nothing wrong with having one, though.  Sadly, it’s typical for people in society to shame others for pursuing anything that falls outside of the most rigid, puritanical, formal type of relationship… and as a result, many men and women feel pressure to learn and explore their own sexuality.  They’re held back in fear of being shamed or shunned by their peer group or society as a whole.

I don’t see society as a whole changing anytime soon, so my opinion is that it’s best to keep this sort of arrangement to yourself and not talk to your peer group about it (unless you feel you have someone you feel you can really trust, who won’t judge you, shame you, moralize you or gossip about you after you share the details… which is a rare person, but they exist).  This relates back to rule #1 – when it ends, you want things to be clean… you don’t want to have to explain to other people that it ended or your reasons why.

Now, there are lots of times where someone will bring up the hormones released during sex and argue that sex, for a woman, is guaranteed to lead to feelings of attachment.  When they argue this, they tend to dig their heels into the ground, citing studies on oxytocin as a scientifically undisputed guarantee that all women become attached after sex.

I agree that the hormone oxytocin is released for women during orgasm.  I do not agree that it creates a guaranteed attachment… I have yet to see a woman marry her vibrator and I understand those things are pretty good at dealing out the orgasms…

So how do I reconcile why some women get attached after sex and others can have sex without getting attached?  It comes down to expectation…

If a woman goes into the sexual experience expecting it to be simply a hook-up with no expectation, desire or hoping for it to lead to a relationship… then these tend to be the women who can have a FWB type arrangement without it getting emotionally messy for them.

Now, I’m not a woman and I can only speak from observation and from the countless accounts I’ve heard from women who have shared their sexual experiences with me. There are lots of women who can hook up without any feelings of attachment… they just don’t tend to talk about it in their social circles since, quite frankly, most people are judgmental and vehemently attack the idea that women can hook up without somehow being a victim.  Sadly, I think it’s guaranteed you’ll see many comments on this article to that effect (and I may or may not have the energy to reply to them… we’ll see).

Sex is not an act to be taken lightly.  It’s the most intimate act two humans can share, it can spread infection or viruses and it can certainly stir up your emotions (especially if you’re not in an emotionally stable place to begin with)… so I want to make it clear that I’m not saying that sex is “no big deal”.

I do, however, want to create a space for people to actually talk about exploring their sexuality without someone immediately shaming them or telling them that if they explore their sexuality, they’re somehow bad or classless or naive or foolish or going to be victimized.  There’s nothing shameful about exploring your sexuality… and if you do, you need to make sure you’re smart about it.

Be smart, be safe and at any point you decide that the “friends with benefits”, hookup lifestyle or personal sexual exploration is something that no longer works for you, there’s nothing wrong with dropping it. While I do see value in women understanding themselves and their sexuality better, I feel like our culture has actually shifted into a shallow, hyper-sexual society, where normal, traditional, loving bonds are the truly rare commodity of our times. So if you find yourself reflecting on your life and wanting to be in a loving, committed relationship, there’s nothing wrong with that either.

For whatever you want for yourself, I’m here to support you and show you how you can be effective at getting what you want for yourself. I want you to be happy, I want you to get what you want and most of all, I want you to be effective at getting what you want when you want it!

I hope this article helped give you clarity on what rules make as friends with benefits situation possible. But if you decide at some point that you want something more with a particular guy, there is more you need to know. There is one defining moment in every relationship that determines if it will last, or if you will be left heartbroken…

At some point, he will ask himself: Is this the woman I want to commit myself to? The answer will determine whether the relationship deepens or ends. Do you know how a man decides a woman is girlfriend or wife material? Do you know what inspires a man to want to commit? If not, you need to read this article next: The #1 Things Men Desire in a Woman

Hope that helps,

eric charles

These Are the Friends With Benefits Rules

  1. A clean break must be possible (and know that it will end eventually).
  2. Make sure you’re already happy and OK in your life.
  3. Both he and you are allowed to do whatever you want outside of the time you’re together.
  4. Keep it simple and keep your options wide open.
  5. Don’t treat him (or even think of him) like a friend or boyfriend.
  6. There’s no drama or problems in a FWB arrangement.
  7. Choose a guy that is emotionally stable.
  8. Be (and maintain being) as sexy as possible.
  9. Make sure you both “get off”…
  10. It is for sexual pleasure and exploration only.
Mila Kunis as "Jaime" and Justin Timberlake as "Dylan" in Screen Gems' FRIENDS WITH BENEFITS.

Mila Kunis as “Jaime” and Justin Timberlake as “Dylan” in Screen Gems’ FRIENDS WITH BENEFITS.

Written by Eric Charles

I'm Eric Charles, the co-founder and co-editor of A New Mode. I love writing articles to help people free themselves from suffering and have clarity in their love life. I have a degree in Psychology and I've dedicated the last 20 years of my life to learning everything I can about human psychology and sharing what gets people out of struggling with life and into having the life they really want. If you want to contact me, feel free to reach out on Facebook or Twitter.

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Christy Self

Chatted w/a guy from a dating site for 3 days before hooking up. Mentioned to him that it’s been 15yrs.(he’s 34 & I’m 50). I’m attracted to younger men & he’s attracted to older women. After the hook up, texted me if I got home ok. Later texted me that it was the best sex he’s ever had. Wanted to hook up again the next evening before I went to work. He lives w/his parents & doesn’t have a car. His dad wound up waking him up, at some point, he mentioned that he’s a mess right now & gave me an old T-shirt. We did have some fun & later he walked me to my car. Lately he hasn’t been texting at much, but I figured that he needed some space. I just don’t know why this happened so soon. Perhaps he’s more of a mess than I want to deal w/right now. I’m just looking for fun.

Reply March 6, 2020, 8:31 am


Friends with benefits, if you obey the rules, you can benefit from it. Many people love to join Fwbdr to find friends with benefits relationship, because it can keep you in discreet and it’s very popular now.

Reply June 26, 2019, 3:43 am


These aren’t the rules I’ve read. And if anyone presented these to me at the beginning, I’d have to back out. Yet, after three years, when I tried to determine where he was at in the “friendship” because I was feeling the tug for a real relationship, he at first thought I was asking for a real relationship. I told him “No!” Then he got angry. It seems men can get possessive if a woman wants to move on too. All I hear is “I can’t do this right now.” Well, my “right now” is “right now.”

Reply March 22, 2019, 12:40 am


This guy that I’ve been having sex with for a few weeks now asked me to stop seeing and having sex with other guys. When we first started our arrangement he didn’t seem bothered by that fact. Why?

Reply September 11, 2018, 4:10 pm


Hello! Has anyone had any experience with a fwb and being sexually exclusive?
How was it? And how did you bring it up?
I am booking up with someone now for sex only. I’d like it to be exclusive merely for less drama and less risk of transmitting std. I know that I could totally handle this without getting emotions involved. Any advice or thoughts on this?

Reply March 26, 2018, 8:34 pm

Eric Charles

Try to find a really busy guy who’s super career driven… someone who has a lifestyle of being discipline and responsible in other areas.

Clearly explain the arrangement you want and your reasons for wanting it. More importantly, explain how ending this arrangement will go and agree on that too, so that when either one of you wants to end it, it’s already been worked out beforehand.

Also, have a regular agreed upon interval where you both discuss whether you’ll continue with your arrangement or end it. So maybe the day after you meet you can discuss – or every couple of meetings – or every month or so… whatever you decide. The reason for it is so that neither one of you feels like there’s an uncomfortable subject to broach… it’s built into the arrangement.

In the interest of full disclosure, I think friends with benefits is a terrible idea for most people. 99% of people lack the objectivity and discipline to carry on a relationship like this, especially with something that has been biologically wired deeply into every human to be a significant and emotional experience.

Yes it’s been sold by Holllywood/mass media as a chic, trendy, modern option. Yes people talk about it like it’s a thing. But in reality, two people get into a pattern of regular sex and one person inevitably slides into relationship-like behaviors… or “catches feelings” (like “feelings” are some sort of unfortunate yet avoidable disease and not deeply wired into every step of the interaction).

The probability that two people will both have the discipline and objectivity to maintain a dynamic like this for any length of time is extremely low. So my advice is to prepare for the interaction to fall apart in a relatively short amount of time and to put in measures to minimize the damage, hurt feelings, disappointment, feelings of betrayal, etc.

I’m not here to stop people from trying a friends with benefits situation, if for no other reason than to discover that it usually ends badly…

Not saying it’s impossible and I’m not here to moralize. You asked, so I’m here to tell you what would lead to your best chances of making it work – that is:

1) Understand that the other person might violate the agreement, so choose the guy very carefully and look at the rest of his life as an indicator that he’s trustworthy, disciplined, responsible and fair-minded to reduce chances of “cheating on” the agreement. You might consider choosing something with a highly abstract mind / thinking style (like a lawyer, accountant, mathematician… someone who’s almost robotic, solid and unemotional).

2) Understand that he may fall into wanting a more standard type of relationship with you and have measures in place from the beginning of how that should be handled.

3) Understand that you may fall into wanting a more standard type of relationship with you and have measures in place from the beginning of how that should be handled.

It’s all about understanding all the normal human emotional responses to sex and prolonged sexual/intimate contact and then building arrangements to handle if any of these natural human responses occur.

Reply March 27, 2018, 1:19 pm


I need of some advice…… I met a man at a bar a few weeks ago (late in the night). I happened to be by myself (something I never do but my friend had gone home early and I decided to stay out). He convinced me to come with him to a house party afterwards. There was good chemistry. We made out a bit towards the end but there was no privacy. We decided to grab a cab knowing we were both going to the same end of the city (I was from out of town and staying with said friend). He asked me to come home with him and I said better not. We got to where I was staying and belatedly I realized that he had asked the cab driver to wait for him a minute while he walked me in – and I jumped out the other side and said ‘bye’ and that was it. (It was 6am and I was just a little tired by then).

Now comes the question part – I know that he owns a landscaping business. I know that I would like to have a FWB (or f buddy) relationship with him. I do NOT want a relationship. My life is too complicated right now and I have small children. We live about 2.5 hours drive away from each other though. I would like to call him on his phone number that is listed on his website (he told me the name of the company because we were chatting all night). I know that he’s single and I’m sure that he is (or was that night) attracted to me. Is it way too creepy to call his cell phone and basically ask him for this type of thing? Or to try it once and see if we like it? I’m 47 and never been in a position to have to ‘ask’. Men always come my way. Because I rejected him after making out I don’t know if he’s pissed, if he could care less, if it would be offensive to him if I asked him to explore this with me? Should I just go ahead and call or is calling his work number (which would logically be his cell) just way too stalker-ish? The thing is that he’s perfect for this. He’s single, we don’t run in the same social circles even though he lives where I know a lot of people, I’m attracted to him, I think he’s attracted to me. He’s only 38 but I don’t think the age difference is terrible in this type of relationship. Is it possible that he just wanted that one night and now I can never get that moment back and find out if this is something that interests him? I don’t come across something like this every day or week. I spend most of my time with my kids. How do I approach this (if at all)? Prior to children I have had FWB relationships and I know that with the right situation it can be good. Help…

Reply August 19, 2017, 12:54 am


Right on! Great article, well written.
I recently started a FWB relationship and wasn’t sure how to handle it but thanks to your article I feel better equipped!

Thank you

Reply July 8, 2017, 12:13 am


I agree with most. I have been in a FWB situations and the it was inside a social circle but it was fine. It kept it exciting. The only thing I can say is you have to keep your feelings at bay. We aren’t romantic anymore but we are friends still 11 yrs later, I would do anything for him and he for me. But life goes on and although we still love each other we were just able to move on past our FWB situation and live our lives without regret!

Reply June 12, 2017, 9:46 pm


This article is pathetic. It’s a to-do list written by a man to ensure that they get the maximum pleasure out of a FWB situation so they can say “I told you so” when the woman catches feelings – which is inevitable because of you like a man enough to sleep with him, you probably like him enough to date him. Ladies, start demanding more and don’t lets these pigs use you. Shame on you Eric. Where is the article for how men should treat women?

Reply May 16, 2017, 10:04 am

Eric Charles

Hey Anjai,

You’re projecting intentions onto me me that are not accurate.

You’re implying that I wrote this article and rubbed my hands together like a cartoon villain, as if my plot was to encourage women to have FWB relationships and do-so in a way that “maximizes pleasure for men”.

That wasn’t my intent. To be quite honest, I wanted to write this article because I felt a lot of major media sites and mainstream magazines actually were encouraging women to have FWB flings and I felt that they were leading women astray.

If my little sister or younger women in my family were considering having a FWB with some guy, I would probably discourage them from doing it. (Although really it’s not the kind of conversation I have with female members of my family… but still, my point is that for women in my own life that I care about I think it would be a bad choice.)

There are lots of women who want to have a FWB. This is obvious given the amount of traffic this post gets. On the whole, I’m not here to moralize and I seldom take a stance on encouraging anything (other than making your good mood a priority in your own life, since your mood becomes your vibe and that affects all of your relationships).

There are some cases in a woman’s life where a fling might be a very good thing for that particular woman at that particular point in her life. Not as a lifestyle, but as something that makes sense and will benefit her as a life experience in the long run.

My point in writing the article was that I wanted to give a sober and complete picture of what a friends with benefits relationship would actually look like in a functional sense.

You’ll notice some women say, “This isn’t FWB, this is a f***-buddy!”

And I respond, “Yes, that’s right!”

Or they say, “You make it sound like sleeping with an actual friend will inevitably lead to a quagmire where one or both people catch feelings and end up in a not-relationship dynamic that eventual ends in turmoil and destruction of the relationship entirely…”

To which I say, “Yeah, pretty much…”

Take a look at my article and my comments again. You’ll see that they’re a lot more consistent with what I’m saying here than with your accusations.

Reply July 22, 2017, 7:33 pm


Am in love with a schoolmate of mine,he once asked me out but I turned him down due to d fact dat my feelings were not yet “matured” for him.But now, am in love with this guy.The only thing stopping me from dating him is his friend so annoying and proud• Pls what can I do??

Reply February 10, 2017, 5:14 pm

Esther Sullivan

Just the fact you said DAT shows you are still way too immature

Reply October 8, 2021, 6:33 pm


Yet another article confusing Friends With Benefits with a F*ck Buddy.

The hint is in the name, you are actually Friends with someone who you are Friends With Benefits with, otherwise it would just be “acquaintances with benefits”, aka a F*ck Buddy.

Reply January 24, 2017, 12:51 pm


I agree with a lot of this article but what I strongly don’t agree with is you saying we should keep a relationship like this secret from our friends or social circles because society isn’t changing any time soon. Society will NEVER change if people keep their true desires secret from those around them. He only way society does change is if people are open about what they feel. I have a friends with benefits relationship and have recently shared it with a number of friends and sure I’ve had one friend get very weirded out because this guy tried some kinky stuff but the most common reaction from people is intrigue, curiosity and honestly, respect. The females in my life see that I am a happy person and think it’s awesome that I am participating in something that although isn’t conventional, is something I enjoy. I think you start to realize how many people actually have thoughts ahout stuff like this but are ashamed to even explore and I think the worst thing you can do is keep it a secret. People who like you, love you or admire you won’t just turn their backs because you’re doing something different. And if they do, then they aren’t the type of people you want to be close with.

Reply January 3, 2017, 11:17 pm


I am currently married and so is he. Our FwB started in oct when we met on a online dating site to persue a one time sexual hook up only!
We both admit to having strong feelings & missing each other when we’re not together. We text & talk everyday and see each other 2-3times a week. I’m sure we have broken every rule we previously set for FWB relationship.
As for me, I have no problem ending my marriage to pursue a exclusive relationship with him. But, honestly I don’t think he is ready to do the same.
From my perspective, there is no way to be that intimate with someone & not develope feelings. From where we started, how would we have room to become anything more??
Advise? Help!

Reply January 3, 2017, 12:46 am

Nikki van Rooyen

Maria, I completely agree. The same thing happened to me though we didn’t look for it online. We met each other by chance and decided from the word go in September that since we are both in committed relationships (he even more so as he lives with the woman and their two young children) that it will only be a FWB story. Well we fell madly in love. The recent December holiday killed us as we could not be in contact and see each other like we were used to. Hence I broke up with him on 2nd January suggesting we’d rather focus on our partners who are committed to us as we don’t have a future together. The pain of breaking up was unbearable. Day by day it is getting better. I am already preparing myself that once he ‘s back from his holiday he will start pursuing me with full force and I would not allow myself to go back there. He won’t ever leave his “wife” and kids and I don’t want to leave my stable and solid 4 year relationship. Lesson I learned is never to go for a FWB situation again. Run for the hills!

Reply January 8, 2017, 3:53 am


Sorry but honestly you knew he was attached and therefore you are only a source of fun! If…. my FWB told me he loved me but he was already in a serious relationship and so I accepted my role in his life. He married her and 11 yes later tells me he always loved me. He would still see me today but I don’t have sex with married men… no way I could do that to another woman:( just tell yourself you are just a toy and deal with that! Or don’t:)❤ sorry but some of these comments just don’t understand that sometimes people just need what they aren’t getting and it has nothing to do with love. Harsh but FWB aren’t victims they are doing this mutually. It can be tough but my rule is NEVER spend the night together… never. Just keep it simple it’s the only way to fight our natural reaction to sex as woman. We fall in love easily…. Take a deep breath and if you are starting to fall in love… pull the plug!

Reply June 12, 2017, 9:53 pm


this guy asked me out. he said he was looking for friends with benefits I said okay any made it perfectly clear what he wanted. hang out drink a little wine but watch a movie f*** some more. and then the second time we met up oh my God I hit the jackpot with you. Third time we met I want you to know that I really really like you I think about you all the time you drive me crazy. 4 time we looked up he said I talk about you all the time too my friend and him and his girlfriend want to know if you want to go out on a double date. I said sure that sounds fun he replied that’s f****** awesome okay moving on with this relationship 5th. time will you look up. he asked me to come over I told him I had to work late and I wouldn’t be able to make it till like 7:18 o’clock any that will you don’t have to get fixed up or anything it’s okay, hell come over and take a shower I don’t care. and I said well that’s okay I’ll just come on over when I get off work. he said call me when you’re half way here I said okay. When I pull up he was standing outside waiting on me find me a bathroom with bath salt and Bubbles and literally gave me a bath it was calling me lovey all evening and I asked him at the end of the evening would you like me to stay or go home and he said stay with me of course. and touching me softly and hugging me and giving me kisses tell me I love your lips I love your eyes and you’re so beautiful didn’t say anything but I’m thinking what the f*** is going on. and then when I mentioned something the other day about as slowly dating each other he said I don’t want to ruin what we have I am totally confused

Reply December 17, 2016, 2:58 pm


Hi I’m a Taiwanese, I’ve just been to Europe for 2 months, and apparently the culture is so different as we don’t usually have FWB relationship, so I really need some advice. I have started my first FWB relationship two weeks ago, we met on tinder, I went to his place and we have sex after watching a film, it last really long and we both felt good. The next day we woke up hugging each other and then we went out to have lunch and shopped in a supermarket before he walked me to train station. After that he told me he would like to had me staying a week if he could, and we constantly sending messages and photos throughout the week before next hangout. He even told me that I’m a brain hogger he was thinking about me all the time and can’t stop reminiscing that night. So the second time was much relax because we know we like each other, we went to supermarket again to buy some groceries, he paid for me, then we have sex after watching a film, this time it last even longer and we both definitely have a great time. Then we’re chatting and lying on bed after the shebang, he showed me all the photos in his phone, and told me some stories, he told me about his friends and his life. I did casually asked him if he still using tinder like I don’t really mind, (because I deleted my account after using it for three days, too many chats and it has just taken up all my time) He suddenly swore to me that he has not using it after we met and he has lost interest to any other girls. We were cuddling fell asleep. The next day we went to buy some commodities for my future visit, he cooked breakfast and dinner for me which actually was quite an effort, I basically just sitting watching him. After he fed me, we have sex again, then we’re chilling and cuddling and chatting for quite long , like three hours, before he walked me to train station again. Sorry this is really long but I need to put in all details because I just can’t judge myself. But this time he didn’t text me much, probably because I’ve violated the rule above, I told him I got bloody kidney infection( which I really do) and feeling unwell, he told me I’ll be fine and let him know how I get on. But this time apparently less enthusiastic, even before I told him my health issues. I know he is busy this week because he left so much works before deadline, I know I have some feelings to him(forgot to mention this important bit lol), but I really need some advice on what he is up to. The last important thing is, I will not be able to see him for two months and he knows that. Because I’ll be traveling with my family. This weekend is the last chance, but he told me he can’t be sure to hang out, he is keen but he really need to focus on his work and I need to rest up as well, he told me he will see me in February anyway and keep in touch. I just got so confused… are we just pure FWB relationship? Apparently not. But does he feel something for me? I bloody don’t know and need an answer . PS. Sorry for my bad English

Reply December 7, 2016, 8:27 pm


My DO CALLED FWB gets pissed off when he thinks I’m stepping over the line BUT when he asks whats going on and I say I have a date he txts me next day asking if I had sex how date went and it’s confysing because throughout our FWB he asks if I met anyone and if I did he asks questions about it, I met someone now but haven’t told him yet its early but how do I approach it when I decide too?

Reply November 14, 2016, 9:25 am


Hi there, I have had a few FEB arrangements and they are all different. Some have been guys that the sexual thing is quite strong with to begin with but we soon realised it wouldnt work as a relationship, so just became friends. Others I’ve been friends with and we had sex every so often when we were drunk! Others was just a sex thing BUT we always used to hang out. Not a lot of texting or calls in between time but we would have a night out or meet for coffee or sometimes a whole weekend and make food and listen to music and lots of great sex! It would feel very cold to me to just have sex then go :/ . All these terms can be quite confusing for what I guess would have been called ‘LOVER’ before. Which could be any kind of relationship that had no strings attached or commitment. There are no rules it’s individual for everyone. Anyway my question is I met a new guy, 14 years younger than me. We met on a night out ended up having great sex and he came over again the next day. He has messaged me a few times since but it’s only friendly messages, no flirting really or anything sexy. Should I step up the flirting? Because honestly usually It would be quite a 2 way thing in the beginning and quite hot and lusty. It just feels like nothing and I’m wondering what’s going on?

Reply October 3, 2016, 4:19 am


In a Kind of in a confusing Fwb situation it started off just fantastic sex, 8 months later not enough for me, but he can’t commit more. But when we are together seems so much more, we spend the night together cooks meals for me sometimes just cuddle no sex involved , just fall asleep cuddling holding hands. when we go out together for food or go to shops we hold hands. Don’t know what we are anymore?

Reply August 28, 2016, 9:38 am


I hear ya talk one way act another

Reply November 14, 2016, 9:56 am


Eric, great article!! I agree 100% with everything you’ve said. I have had 4 FWB in my life. I’m 44 and single again and just entered my 4th FWB “relationship”. We met online, we share no friends, and we both know that it’s just sex, really great amazing sex. I’ll be sad when it ends, I always am, but not because I’m emotionally attached, but because it’s hard to find the right person. I actually saw him in the grocery store last night and we made eye contact, smirked, and kept walking.

I want to caution everyone reading this that Eric is correct about knowing boundaries and not expecting it to turn into a relationship. Ever. As soon as you do, end it immediately. I had 1 bad experience with a man who fell in love and it was soul crushing to break his heart.

Yes, there is a stigma around this but two consenting adults who can make it work around busy schedules, it is really fabulous. Honesty is the best policy!!

As a woman, it is very empowering to own your sexuality and not be timid or shy about what you want. Thanks again for a great article!!

Reply July 28, 2016, 3:38 pm


I couldn’t figure out how to ask you guys this anywhere else on this page!. Hey so I’ve kinda had a fwb going but not quite that general just circumstances called for it on my behalf but we get along amazingly and feel very comfortable around him but I don’t want to settle. Yesterday we were mid/kinda making plans to hang out a he will be going away and yes sex was planned to be involved. Anyways I was going to get back to him and I did a bit later on s snapchat (that’s how we were communicating at that moment. message was opened. I texted later saying “so same plan as last time?” Where he didn’t reply till later saying that he Didn’t realise I had texted him and had just had some weed brownie and will be a bit wasted and feel stink. ( he doesn’t often do weed these just one offs).

(A back story) I have had a long relationship in the past with a guy who was addicted to weed and I was never a priority And weed was always chosen first. )

Anyways I pondered one wether to say anything to this guy in getting close with And ended up deciding to say something otherwise I would have been annoyed if I wasn’t honest and didn’t want to just stop talking to him for no reason or seem to play games so I messaged him this “Ohkay I’ll be honest with you as I always am and always will be ☺️ But yeah I don’t know what we are but I know I look forward to seeing you and hanging and being crazy with ya and everything this has been ☺️ but yeah the weed thing was just a sensitive thing for me. I don’t have an issue with people doing weed just as long as they don’t really choose it over me or it doesn’t take over their lives wich I know you don’t really and plus ya could’ve waited for me to be round and taken my weed brownie virginity!!” I don’t regret saying it as I’m trying to be careful and wise about what I deserve but I never intended to guilt trip him or anything. I have had no response

Reply July 14, 2016, 2:00 pm


Oh and a tongue face at the end of the message haha accidentally deleted that out.. The also messaged him earlier saying .. I’m sorry, it was never my intention to make you feel stink or to ruin your buzz I know it was just kinda how the night worked out aye and I’m sure and hope u had a good one I just know I would have been annoyed with myself if I wasn’t honest. Hope you Have a really good trip away!

Reply July 14, 2016, 2:04 pm


Great article. I am new to this site and I am already liking how you approach things from a neutral but informative perspective. Thank you.

Reply June 20, 2016, 4:14 am


Doesnt sound to me like you just want her as friends with benefits, sounds like you’d like something more, doesn’t sound like you have clear boundaries either. Decide what you want.

Reply June 20, 2016, 4:12 am

Just another girl

Just one thought that came to me when I read this … “the hormone oxytocin is released for women during orgasm. I do not agree that it creates a guaranteed attachment… I have yet to see a woman marry her vibrator and I understand those things are pretty good at dealing out the orgasms…”

I’m a woman who can usually get a good orgasm from a vibrator. It can be very intense at times and occasionally a better orgasm than from the real thing. BUT afterwards there is always a feeling of not being fully satisfied. Yes, there is a physical release, but it is what I call an “empty orgasm”. I believe this is because the emotional side of having sex with another person is far more fulfilling than sex with an object. There is evidence that the hormone prolactin is released in far greater quantities after sex with a partner than after masturbation.

Reply May 8, 2016, 6:43 pm


Fantastic response, I too was a bit perplexed by that section of the piece and the idea the attachment is purely due to chemical factors. There are times where a woman may like a guy and sleep with him a few times, have good sex but soon it just fizzles out. Same chemical release, NO attachment.
Then there are times that sleeping with a new beau for the first time has you absolutely enamoured, you just cant get enough of this person. It is more than chemicals- it’s the emotional connection, his smell,the way touches you, looks at you etc – something amazing just happens.

Also know exactly what you mean by ’empty orgasm’- thought I was the only one who felt this. For me masturbation is more about stress relief than any kind of real sexual fulfilment.

Reply June 18, 2016, 6:38 am

Eric Charles

I appreciate your responses here… and look, I’m a guy, so no matter what I research, I can’t speak to whatever your individual experience is as a woman.

All I can say is that I’ve spoken to tens of thousands of women over the decade of me doing this work, and I can tell you that there was a significant portion of them that could hook up with a guy without feeling any feeling of attachment. In fact, when I would probe them a bit and ask if they felt any feeling of attachment to the guy, they would say, “No… it was just a hookup, it’s not like I wanted to date the guy.”

Maybe it’s a temperament factor. Maybe it’s a mindset factor. Maybe it’s a biological factor.

I couldn’t tell you that… but so far, neither can anyone else (including science) why some women have no problem with no-strings attached hookups while other women don’t.

I don’t claim to know that answer… and no, I am not promoting no-strings attached hookups as a lifestyle – I’m just not discouraging it either. My only recommendation on what anyone wants to do is that they do it safely and with good information.

I felt it was a disservice to talk to women as if *all* sex for all women inevitably led to feelings of attachment when I have observed that not to be the case across a significant portion of women.

At the same time, *you* are the one who lives in your body 24/7. It makes sense for you to carefully observe how you personally respond to sex and if you choose to engage in a no-strings attached hookup, that you observe if you have any feelings of attachment. If you find that you do, then I would encourage you to decide what is the best lifestyle choice for you.

Lots of people want to talk about a woman’s romantic life and sex life like what they do is some kind of chic lifestyle choice… like doing Pilates for exercise or getting a mani/pedi.

Your body, your sex life and your love life are highly personal and unique to fit *you*… even if everyone in the world was having random hookups, it doesn’t mean its right for *you*… and, also, even if everyone in the world was waiting until marriage for sex, it also doesn’t mean it’s right for *you*.

Look inside and listen to your body, your mood, your emotional responses. I’m trying to be inclusive with this post by not alienating or shaming anyone’s lifestyle choices and desires… decide what is right for you and live accordingly.

Reply June 18, 2016, 12:32 pm


ive been in one, for TEN years! thru relationships with others, each if us having KIDS, me 5 yrs ago, him 6, and we were really relllyyyy close as friends till about 7 yrs ago, I moved a lil urthr away, we obv both had new relationships, we never cheated on our Sig others but as soon as they were over we have started right back up. sex is AMAZING. idk why we always go backto eachother but we do! what does this mean> I KNOW for a fact, not in denial, that he cares for me. the only time I get emotionally involved is the period after drunk sex(obv drunk texting happens!) and I start rambling but he never really answers I assume bc he knows its drunk rambling, but the next day I always wake up in lala land thinking of him for a week, thinking should I end it or ask for a “talk”, but idl what to do. at this point WHY nOT just be in a relationship, we were pretty much best friends platonically before the FWB started, so we have a good foundation and closeness, but I still cant decide. I want more from a relationship and would def take it with him but were both single idk whats right to say b I don’t want to lose the amazing sex. hes answered a cpl times like asking why am I getting so into wanting a relationship but like I said WHY NOT and knowing he DOES care for me, including getting mad and jealous over my prev relationships, why doesn’t he take a step or whatever? I’m sooooooo confused. AND btw we have never SET any rules or anything

Reply April 27, 2016, 11:11 am


I have a question I use to do friends with benifits one time and I was just wondering if it’s only about sex??cause I had it with him at the time where he would help me out with things like money would spend money on me for food or other things like stuff for my kids and just help do things around my house but it would be all the time just ever so offend is that what some ppl with fwb do

Reply April 4, 2016, 9:34 pm


My best friend with benefits is not only my ex’s roomate but my neighbor. We’ve been doing this for about five months. I’m kind of confused though, and I need help. Being FWB means sex only, right? Well our thing is hangout first than have sex. We do this once a week, but when we go out we hold hands, kiss, and hug like if we’re a couple. Is that okay? So every time I bring up my ex up he gets mad, but he says he doesn’t. Does that mean he is catching feelings for me? He told me in the beginning Kiss and don’t fall in love, ever since he told me that, that’s what I did. Help me, please?

Reply February 16, 2016, 12:46 am


The relationship is no longer about sex . The first sign is showing affection in public , if its just sex it shouldn’t leave the bedroom. Secondly he shows emotional signs like getting jealous . Research shows the more you spend time with someone its inevitable to get attached . I believe he is developing feelings but you mentioning your ex sends him a signal that you are not intrested in him , which is probably why he denies it

Reply March 26, 2016, 3:50 am


Rule #7 is where I went wrong. I would play by the rules 100% but the guy would start playing mind games, projecting his insecurities on me, asking for boyfriend privileges etc happened three times with different men. This fwb thing needs mentally and emotionally strong people if you’re neither just stick to being single or looking for a real relationship. Great article.

Reply January 25, 2016, 12:00 am



Reply January 25, 2016, 12:02 am

Guiness Citron

Really good article thank you! I have tried to have my 1st FWB and got myself all confused! I guess it is quite normal as it is a completely new experience for me. But I really like it! It is great fun and great sex too! I see how following the rules is in fact very important, obviously. So I am tidying up my feelings and putting my thoughts in order and definitely want to carry on ;)

Reply January 14, 2016, 8:51 am


“Don’t treat him (or even think of him) like a friend”

Hold on, but then why is it called FRIENDS-With-Benefits? What this article seems to be describing is F*ck-Buddy rules. I would say that FWB starts off as friends and then turns into FWB, rather than meeting a stranger and calling it FWB.

Reply January 10, 2016, 4:02 pm

Eric Charles

Yup… that’s on purpose.

Reply January 11, 2016, 11:36 am


My friend with benefits situation has always included extra benefits for her. I take care of little things around her house and help her with whatever problems she has that I can. I don’t enjoy it much anymore, so I am hoping she finds someone who she is happy with, since it no longer seems to be me. Sounds and feels more like a disgruntled girlfriend most of the time now. It’s just that I wanted to make sure her life was okay, and that I really was a “benefit” to her life. I now think it was a bad idea to do this, but it’s just the kind of person I am. I always give my all in everything I do. I’ve been waiting for it to end for a while now because that’s where it seems to be going. Should I be patient and wait for it to end, or bring it up and end it. I am quite patient. 40 years in the desert is an understandable wait, but it seems a month without meeting isn’t.

Reply December 23, 2015, 8:07 am


I think I may be falling harder then I should be for my friend with benefits. We have been together since the beginning of June it’s now mid November I don’t know what to do or say if I should even bring it up to him in conversation. Im trying to be the strong one and stick to the original deal that I made. The rules to be FWB that I wasn’t looking for anything more then that.. But things have changed since we set the rules. We changed, and are exclusive to one another for the past 5 months with the understanding if you do sleep with someone else use a condom and tell the other person. I personally have had no desire to be with anyone else.

I can’t complain because everything is going perfect with us. No arguments of any kind on my side or his, we just get along really well. Also I can’t pick out but maybe a hand full of flaws like snoring loud (broke rule number 1 he asks me to spend the night sometimes and I have) and getting embarrassed if I watch him eat, and the negative insecurities he has about himself when in my eye I can’t see them, to me he’s perfect the way he is. I couldn’t ask for more. But as far as a few quarks here and there who doesn’t have them, I know I do.

We both work in the Airline industry so he is also a co-worker. He and I had just spent an entire week together in Easter Island. I think a week is a long time to spend with someone that’s only supposed to be FWB. It really was a pleasurable trip and we are really looking foward to the next vacation together in Quebec in February.
This past trip we both really respected one another’s personal space more then enough. I don’t know if that’s because that’s how he is or just is on good behavior because he wants more out of a relationship. He feels just like a boyfriend just no title.

As far as l go I am just very laded back and chill person. I know he texts other women and has a lot of girls as friends. He texts me a good morning and a goodnight everyday, I let him be the one who starts the texting because I don’t want to come off as being needy and push him away, do you think that’s to shelfish of me? I don’t get jealous because I text other men as well, and do have quite a few guy friends myself. So how can I get upset with him if I do the same thing he does. He is on the understanding that I’m not looking for anyone else and it is harmless. But I’ve heard from other co-workers he gets a little jealous but he has never said anything to me about it. I’m perfectly happy with him and my eyes are only for him at this point in time. I often think about what it would be like to add an official title to the relationship we share but we are also co-workers. But the part that scares me the most is adding the relationship title is will it change things. For me nothing changes except the fact I get to refer to him as my boyfriend, it’s getting a little confusing because I really don’t know what to tell people when they ask me about him. We spend a lot of time together at work and do see one another outside of work on our days off at least twice a month, that’s not counting the few times a week we sleep together.

But that being said I am very much my own person and don’t try and change things I have no control over. I will always be glad to offer advice but it’s advice its your ultimately its your decision to follow it not mine. I’m not the type to get offend if you don’t take it. If you are my significant other and I will support you in any means possible. When in a relationship it’s not my goal to change you and the things you like to do, I would never want you to sacrifice who you are because that’s the part I love about you is your true ability to be yourself. I’m 100% faithful to him and probably will be for some time, he fulfills ever desire I ever have. Don’t get me wrong because I’ve had more then a few opportunities present themselves but deep down I couldn’t take it farther then kissing another guy. And first thing I think about when I kiss another guy is guilt because it’s not him and the other guys just don’t know how he kisses me and puts the biggest smile on my face after I get that kiss. He has something really special about him and I don’t know why I’m so drawn to him.

Any thought on how should approach this one or should I just continue the way it is? I’m not new to FWB I’ve had them before but this one is just really confusing

Reply November 15, 2015, 8:56 pm


Just wanted to update if anyone cares. We did have the talk and decided we definitely don’t want it to end. If that means being in a monogamous relationship with one another that’s what we’ll commit to.
Im glad I followed my gut and asked him because he was just afraid to bring up the subject to me as I was to him. I’m very happy the way it ended up, still on edge though because it seems like your typical Hollywood love story. Hope it’s not to good to be true. Well wish me luck on my new endeavor I’m sure I’ll grow a lot as a person and learn some valuable life lessons. Remember the best things in life just happen. You can’t be looking for something that doesn’t exist. What does exist for you comes to you when the time is right in your life no sooner no later. Best of luck to all

Meghann Blaze

Reply December 5, 2015, 1:44 am


So makes sense, but here’s a question:

I recently (thought I) entered a FWB thing with a guy I have known for two years. We had a rocky start back then (him being taken and me not knowing), we hooked up a couple of times, then I broke it off when he came clean about his girlfriend. I moved on, had a serious relationship and a live-in boyfriend. He used to contact me on a regular basis during those years, reminiscing about how it was and what could have been between us had we been single. I just brushed him off and kept the conversation very dry and friendly.

I recently broke up with my ex, and since this guy was the best sex I ever had and was single for a couple of months too, I decided, why not have some fun. We hooked up the same day and many times since, have been sexting for two weeks non stop. Everything was peachy, great sex, no drama. Until last week.

Sexting stopped, instead he began texting me about normal stuff, asking me about my day, invited me over on Friday AND we spent the evening playing games on his xbox, I spent the night, without any sex. Next day, he texts me how beautiful it was and thanks. He messages me every day, but there is no more sex talk and I am wondering, did I somehow break my FWB?

We have been messaging back and forth since but again, not about sex, he asked me out for this week. He has always initiated contact at least 90% of the time, since I broke it off two years ago and I still rarely contact him first myself.

And I am confused. What changed?

Reply September 2, 2015, 6:28 am


Sounds like you were the one that almost got away!! No man likes that feeling…so he has a deeper appreciation and respect by the sounds of it…for you and your new fwb relationship. Just my opinion though.

Reply November 8, 2015, 8:40 pm

Barb moore

An extremely good article and very accurate – i have been in a FWB arrangement for last 4 years – works perfectly for both of us – we have a laugj huge amount of fun and amazing sex eaxh time – no expextation of anything more on either side – bottom line is if you do it right – its fun fulfils needs and no washing

Reply July 15, 2015, 4:17 pm


Thank you so much for this article. This is so refreshing to read and I agree with the ground rules. One has to be mentally and emotionally stable and having a chat with ‘yourself’ is crucial. I will definitely apply these points.

Reply July 15, 2015, 8:27 am


This has become so confusing….
Boyfriend separated from his wife almost one year ago….been seeing eachother exclusively for 8 months and other than issues about his son and two step kids the relationship has been great.

Two weeks ago he begin to get possessive and started complaining that I dont answer his calls, texts or return his calls fast enough….now he has gone for a week and has not sent any calls or texts….

Very confusing situation! Want the relationship but feel like he is playing games with me.

Any advice is welcome….

Reply July 14, 2015, 7:53 pm

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